3D platformers have come a long way since their inception, but back in the mid-'90s, the genre was a wild west of ideas and applications. It’s weird to think of something as straightforward as moving around in a 3D space being a technical challenge, but that was absolutely the case, as the flood of mediocre attempts to cash-in attest...
The Portal is put out to pasture
Skylanders Imaginators may be a launch title on the Switch, but it's not a new game as such - we've already played this on Wii U, after all. While many expected Activision to simply roll out the Wii U game with boosted visuals, there have been some changes to make it fit perfectly on Nintendo's new system - in fact,...
Use your imagination
With the demise of Disney Infinity you may think that toys to life games are on the way out. However, with the Skylanders Academy show on Netflix and another new game for fans, Activision are pressing ahead - for the time being, at least. Skylanders Imaginators is this year's game and it offers a substantial twist on what has...
Going for peanuts
Celebrating its 65th Anniversary, Charles Schulz's Peanuts comic remains iconic and influential. The comic has spurned television movies which are staples to American culture, such as It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and, this year, The Peanuts Movie hit theaters. Its characters are beloved, recognizable and icons in of...
Put another dime in the jukebox, baby
In 2005 Guitar Hero sparked a gaming revolution, filling our heads with wicked riffs and our closets with plastic instruments. The series grew from a single act into a full fledged ensemble in a matter of years, invoking various imitators and spin-offs. Eventually players' excitement for rockin' around the clock...
Articulation, That’s What You Need
While other toy-game hybrid makers are moving on from older Nintendo hardware this year, Activision has doubled down on Wii, 3DS and Wii U Skylanders with bespoke versions and cross-over dual action Skylander-amiibo. This year's Skylanders Superchargers novelty is a good one. The articulated vehicles not only...
Since American Idol first graced the airwaves back in 2002, a number of similar shows have stepped up to deliver the singing superstar search process season after season, including - since 2011 - NBC's The Voice. In this Wii U title based on the show, The Voice translates into a karaoke game with a tournament structure, a soundtrack split...
Knaves in Toyland
As the original ’toys-to-life’ video game concept — inspiring both Disney’s Infinity and Nintendo’s upcoming amiibo line — Skylanders has an impressive legacy to live up to. The series’ first release, Spyro’s Adventure, took the world and characters from the classic Spyro the Dragon games and crafted an enjoyable...
A decent game in disguise
After reviewing the absolutely horrid Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark on Wii U, it would be hard to get our hopes up for the 3DS iteration if it weren't for the name on the back of the box. Unlike every other version of the game, Rise of the Dark Spark on 3DS was produced by the handheld experts at WayForward...
Less than meets the eye
Whether it's Batman, Gears of War or Zelda, it's always a gamble when a beloved series leaves the developer that created it in favour of a new one. In many of these cases it's because the publisher wants to churn out annual or semi-annual instalments in a profitable franchise, and one studio is not enough to carry this...
Triple the fun and no strings attached
The Cut the Rope franchise may have risen to fame through its release on the Apple App Store, but it has also had a pretty prominent history on Nintendo’s most recent handheld systems, too. The first game in the series was originally ported to DSiWare back in 2011, before returning again on the 3DS eShop last...
This reboot of a reboot could use another reboot
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is exactly the video game that the film deserves. Sony and Activision couldn’t have planned it better if they tried. Nowadays, Spider-Man’s existence outside of comic books isn’t for creative purposes, and the accepted level of quality is appalling on all fronts...
Worth the "Stroggle"?
When it comes to first-person shooter games on the Nintendo 64, there’s one title which stands out above all the rest: GoldenEye 007. During the late 1990s, Rare’s Bond-themed masterpiece provided gamers with countless hours of single- and multiplayer fun, and because of this it is still fondly remembered by many to this...
ABC's Wipeout - transatlantic cousin to the BBC's Total Wipeout - is a long running television show that sees a motley crew of caricatured contestants enthusiastically flinging themselves through, over, and off of the real-life equivalents of foam-padded platforming levels. It's also had quite a few video game adaptations over...
Best left in a pineapple under the sea
Not content with his role as star of an immensely successful Nickelodeon cartoon and enviable position as the world's most popular anthropomorphized sponge, SpongeBob Squarepants also enjoys a prolific and presumably lucrative side-career in the world of video games. This latest release, Plankton's Robotic...
The one that flew over the cuckoo's nest
Star Wars games have had something of a tumultuous journey in recent years. Whereas the nineties and early noughties saw a slew of fantastic Star Wars games, there’s no denying that quality control has taken something of a back seat in more recent times. The franchise has been increasingly used to primarily...
Grabbed by the ghoulies
With all of the noise made in the wake of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare's success — everything from sky-high sales figures to unfortunate ad campaigns, or the rise, fall and subsequent embalming of developer Infinity Ward — it's easy to lose sight of just how phenomenal and innovative that game really was. Genres evolve...
It’s arguably difficult to consider Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV reboot as anything other than a rousing success. Blending together elements from the classic 1987 series with a more modern approach, the show has been a hit with fans both new and old, treading that awkward line between paying homage to the past and...
There is a common and unfortunate trend in video game development in which a great game is released on a home console, and then a vastly inferior version — or spin-off — is released as a portable title. Recent victims of this phenomenon include LEGO City Undercover: The Chase Begins and Sonic Lost World. While these shouldn’t be...
Swap ‘til you drop
It’s no secret that collecting and gaming go hand in hand — how else can you explain the popularity of special editions of games that come with physical content as well as toys and figurines? Taking this into account, it’s no wonder that the Skylanders series has become so popular and successful since its inception just...
An angry trio
What can possibly be said about Angry Birds that hasn’t been said a million times already? A game that started out as a humble iPhone app just four years ago has now permeated our culture in a huge way. There are multiple sequels to the original game, toys, books, an animated television series, and it’s nearly impossible to walk...
Oh, we're furious alright
It's easy to look at the name, Fast and Furious: Showdown, and leap to conclusions that it'll be a lazy, phoned-in movie tie-in that represents the lowest common denominator of gaming. Of course we shouldn't make such assumptions, as a game based around a series of over-the-top car action movies surely has the potential to...
Zombies are impossible to avoid. Not that the living dead are walking among us and causing havoc, but the media has been absolutely permeated by them. As evidence, we have The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct; the Wii U’s second game about zombies – known in-game as “walkers” – works as the prequel to a television show about...
Spidey takes Manhattan, again
Our friendly neighborhood wall crawler's cinematic reboot in last summer's The Amazing Spider-Man had us leaving theatres utterly torn. We're down with new interpretations and while the Spider-Man on-screen offered a lot of what we love about the character, the surrounding film was kind of a mess. The same can be said...
They went and wrecked it
When it comes to video games, film tie-ins have had something of a bumpy history. While GoldenEye 007 for Nintendo 64 proved that a licence can flourish in the right hands, it’s more often than not a rare exception. However, when a game is based on a movie which itself is based on video games, it’s fair to assume that...